[Fsf-friends] Fwd: [ifsa] RMS: Learn to share!

Praveen A pravi.a@[EMAIL-PROTECTED]
Wed Oct 24 21:31:42 IST 2007

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From: rek2GNU/Linux <rek2 at binaryfreedom.info>
Date: २००७ अक्तूबर २४ ०४:३४
Subject: [ifsa] RMS: Learn to share!
To: Independent Free Software Global Activist
<independentfreesoftwareactivists at binaryfreedom.info>

Stallman: Students Should Be Taught to Share With The Class

 Sun, 2007-10-21 10:41 — dcp

Richard Stallman, in receiving an honorary Doctorate from Italy's
University of Pavia, brought back memories of the basic primary school
principle that students bringing cookies to class should bring enough
for everyone.

In his speech, Richard Stallman discussed how innovation can impact
individuals and society for better or for worse. He pointed out the
negative innovation of bringing criminal charges against fishermen for
rescuing distressed migrants at sea. Such innovations directly affect
our freedom. Stallman went on to pose the question he considers most
vital when considering technological innovations: "How does this
affect our freedom? How does this affect our social solidarity?"

He then addressed the issue of non-Free developer as dictator,
exerting total control over software and its users. Stallman attacked
Windows Vista, Apple, and Google Earth as examples of how companies
attempt to restrict users' freedom with respect to software. Stallman
emphasized the two freedoms that seem most important of the Four
Fundamental Freedoms: the freedom to help your neighbor and the
freedom to contribute to your community. Combined with the other two
freedoms, users can exert more control over the direction of
innovation in software.

He reminded his audience that by exerting dictatorial control over the
software, developers then have the ability to spy on users, without
regard for the user's privacy, freedom or even the law of the land.
And there is nothing users can do about it. He then went on to mention
that Yahoo and Hotmail have been blocking e-mail from TruthOut.org
from reaching subscribers who use their services. In separate news,
Verizon Wireless came under attack for the same kind of behavior with
respect to its phone services. Thus, the ability to exert such control
can easily lead to direct attacks on Freedom of Speech. Free Software
prevents such things from happening.

Stallman went on to highlight the special connection between Free
Software and educational institutions. For those who recall teachers
admonishing students to bring enough cookies to share with the class,
Stallman similarly admonished educational institutions: "So every
school should bring only Free Software to class, and set an example
with its software of the practice of disseminating human knowledge
while building a strong, capable, independent and free society. And
encouraging the spirit of good will, of helping other people."

In Stallman's view, the mission of any educational institution is to
teach students to be strong and independent, rather than dependent.
Thus, schools should make it an objective to reject the "shiny new
chains" of Windows Vista, and other non-Free software, and migrate to
Free Software, as part of their overall mission. "Other Universities
are doing this or have done it: you can do it too. You only have to
reject social inertia as a valid reason for going deeper and deeper
into the pit.", he said.

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